Not in chronological order...just bits and pieces of Drake and Josh's lives.
Without you, the breeze warms…
The hustle and bustle of New York City was especially thrilling today because it was the first day of spring. The sun was shining, a light breeze was drifting over the streets, and people traded in their hats and scarves for shorts and sandals. Josh couldn't help but smile at the telltale signs of spring that were decorating the city. Everything seemed fresher to him. It was a new beginning for the city – and for Josh – as it shed its winter snow and made room for the sunshine and flowers.
He noticed that his disposition was a little brighter. He had an extra bounce in his step. He felt refreshed. He knew he aced his last exam. He got a really great shirt on sale. He found a brand new coffee place that was even better than Starbucks. His favorite professor had finally noticed the extra work he was putting in. Everything about his life was perfect for the moment.
The best thing, though, was knowing that in only one week, he'd have Drake in his arms again.
The girl smiles…
"Great show tonight, man!" Trevor told Drake, clapping him on the back as he put his guitar away.
Drake looked up with a grin. "Thanks, bro! That crowd was amazing! Like, holy fuck."
Trevor nodded, glad to see the sheer excitement on Drake's face. "Livin' the dream!"
"I really am," Drake replied, slinging his guitar over his shoulder and catching the eye of a brunette in a short dress with a sly smile. "Hey, uh, dude, I'll catch up with you in a minute."
With a nod, Trevor headed away, and Drake made his way toward the girl. "Hey," he said, laying the charm on as thick as he could. He wasn't interested, but he couldn't disappoint a fan. "What can I do for you, pretty?"
"I was wondering if you could sign this?" She batted her long, and clearly fake, eyelashes and bit her lip as she held out a copy of Drake's album.
"Sure." He pulled a Sharpie from his back pocket and opened the cap with his teeth, raising an eyebrow as he scribbled out his name over his face. "There you go." He handed it back to her with a smile, and their eyes met. She had the most gorgeous blue stare he'd ever seen.
She gave him a perfect, white grin as she stepped closer to him. "There's something else I'd like if it's not too much trouble…" She planted a kiss on his cheek, and he did all he could not to visibly flinch. He knew exactly what she wanted, but instead he'd get her to the after party. Nothing more.
As he mindlessly draped his arm around the girl, he realized the only smile he was interested in seeing was Josh's.
The cloud moves…
"Pretty sure that's a cirrostratus cloud!" Josh's friend Tyler said as-a-matter-of-factly as he, Josh, and Brian lied in the grass looking up at the sky.
"Cirrostratus? Please, that's definitely a cirrus!" Brian countered.
"Josh, can you help us out? That's definitely a cirrostratus!" Tyler replied with a hard edge to his tone.
Josh snapped out of his trance at the mention of his name. Once the arguing had started, he realized how much Tyler and Brian reminded him of Craig and Eric. No, they weren't dating, but they fought like an old married couple over the geekiest of subjects. He had been imagining what Drake would have done if he was lying with them. He would laugh at them for even having that conversation. "They're just clouds, man," Drake would say. "Don't dissect 'em."
"What?" Josh asked, finally returning to reality.
"Brian over here – " Tyler poked him hard in the arm causing the gangly boy to let out a yelp, "says that cloud is a cirrus. But it's totally not. It's a cirrostratus! What do you think? You're siding with me, right?"
With a shrug, Josh shifted his gaze to them. "I don't know, guys. Sorry. Clouds have never really been my forte. But, hey, have you guys ever looked for shapes in the clouds? Like, that one there!" Josh pointed. "It kinda looks like a cat, doesn't it?"
The two boys looked at Josh like he was crazy. "Why would you do that?" Brian quizzed incredulously. "Who cares what animal it looks like? It's all about what kind it is, which Tyler doesn't seem to know!"
"Yeah, dumb idea," Josh mumbled, tuning out their bickering. Drake always looked for shapes in the clouds. Things were so simple with Drake. He just wanted simplicity.
Without you, the tides change…
Drake was tired of it all. He thought having a record deal would be the best thing for him, but he wasn't so sure at this point. Yes, it was helping him get his music out there, and yes, it was a dream come true, but he never thought of the possible downsides that would come with being a musician. The past few weeks at work had been less than enjoyable. All the executives were throwing contracts and business opportunities and new song ideas and places he had to go for photoshoots at him left and right, and he didn't understand what was going on. It was getting to be too much to handle without Josh's help. He missed having Josh as his manager because as much as he liked his new manager, Pete, he most certainly wasn't Josh.
Before leaving for school, Josh was determined to get Drake the best manager he could find, and Pete fit the bill. The only problem was that Drake knew he needed to read every contract, and he was afraid to ask Pete what things meant. The large words used in the contracts confused him. He never felt comfortable enough asking Pete to explain. With Josh, that was never an issue – he would ask for help, and Josh would give him that lopsided grin only he could do, take him in his arms, and in between kisses, explain what it said using terms that Drake could understand. Instead, he sat in his apartment reading by the glow of a dim light in his living room, wondering what all the jargon meant and hoping that he wasn't getting screwed out of money.
Drake was generally a pretty forgetful person, and he didn't feel comfortable asking Pete to remind him all the times he was supposed to go to photoshoots, so he set dates on his phone and hoped he remembered. He didn't like the new song ideas that the executives wanted him to go with, but he didn't think Pete could help him with a nice way to tell them that. He felt alone.
He knew Josh needed to go away and make a life of his own, but he was tired of being alone. He was tired of things being different. He was tired of Josh being so far away. He was just plain tired.
The boys run…
It always seemed like people ran everywhere around campus. Sure, Josh did when he was a freshman, scared that he'd be late to his next class and his professor would murder him, but that soon passed. Now that he was a senior, he strolled around NYU's beautiful campus and waved to friends nonchalantly. Every so often, he saw freshman scrambling around with books in hand trying to get to their next destination, and he'd just laugh.
As Josh headed to find a spot to sit down and read, someone crashed into him.
"Oh, god, oh, god, I'm so sorry," the boy sputtered, picking up the books he dropped, looking grateful that Josh bent down to help him pick them up.
"No worries, man," Josh answered, never once looking at the guy, focusing on retrieving all the books.
When they both stood up, Josh was taken aback – the boy had sweeping auburn bangs and deep brown eyes that made him step back in shock. "Well, uh, thanks," he said, a smile curving his lips as his freckled nose crinkled. "See ya 'round, maybe?"
Josh nodded and gave a feeble wave, unable to speak as he watched him walk away.
He was tired of seeing Drake lookalikes everywhere he went. He only wanted the real thing.
The oceans crash…
From the time Drake was young, he liked to walk down the beach at sundown to clear his head. It started right after his dad left when he wanted to get away from the house to forget everything that was going on in his life. Everything was so peaceful and serene; almost everyone had gone home, and only a few people were left wandering around just like he was. You could hear the waves crashing against the shore, and Drake always rolled up his jeans and walked through the wet sand, liking the way it felt between his toes.
As time passed, Josh found out that was where Drake went when he was upset and wanted to get away. One night, he decided to join him. Drake was pleasantly surprised when he felt Josh's hand in his, and they stayed out until almost 3AM. They ended up rolling around together, kissing furiously and not caring that they were completely soaked and were covered in sand. They laughed and laughed that night, and Drake crawled into bed with Josh and brushed the sand out of his curls.
Every time Drake walked down the beach alone, he looked out to sea and his mind drifted back to that night. And he wished that he and Josh could relive that night. And he wished that there weren't thousands of miles separating them. And he was waiting anxiously for the day they could take a late night stroll together again.
The crowds roar…
Drake's most favorite place on earth was onstage. There was nothing he loved more than the rush he got from playing his music in front of a live audience. He worked so hard on the material that actually playing it for a crowd was a gift. He loved listening to the words he wrote sung back at him while people stared at him in awe, so amazed that they were finally seeing the Drake Parker live and in person.
There was nothing more gratifying than hearing a group of perfect strangers, brought together solely by your music, chant your name as you rocked out and played a killer riff. Or see the tears streaming down someone's face as you played one of your more heartfelt tunes, happy that you moved someone to the point of crying. Or even hearing people you never even met declare their love for you. And knowing you had thousands of people captivated for an hour and a half. Drake didn't know why anyone would want a job other than a musician – there was nothing he loved more than the feeling that washed over him the second he was under the bright lights of the stage.
Well, there was one thing he loved more.
And he looked for that one thing's face in the audience every night. And he wished that one thing was waiting to hug him the second he stepped off the stage.
But Josh was on the other side of the country, and Drake was alone.
The days soar…
"God, I need spring break," Josh's roommate Brian said, flopping back onto the thin dorm mattress with a groan. "I can't take that English class. Professor Johnson is ultimately going to be the death of me!"
"Same," Josh agreed, throwing his bag on the floor and sitting down on his bed, looking at Brian and shrugging. "I love literature, and he's making me hate it! But the good news is there's only 48 days until spring break!" He smiled excitedly at his countdown.
Brian raised an eyebrow, giving Josh a funny look. "You, uh, memorized it?"
"You must be goin' somewhere good then? Cause I'm jealous – I'm stuck going back to bumfuck Milwaukee. "
Josh smiled and shook his head. "Nah, just goin' home."
"Oh," Brian laughed, putting two and two together as he remembered Josh's unconventional love affair with his brother, nay – STEPbrother. "Drake."
"Yeah, Drake." A grin curved Josh's lips as he looked down at his favorite picture of him and Drake on his phone. Only 48 more long days until he got Drake all to himself.
The babies cry, without you.
Fucking hell, can he just shut the fuck up? Josh thought to himself as he listened to the screaming baby sitting one table over from him at his favorite coffee shop. He came in for his morning latte before his chemistry class and was not impressed with the much unneeded disturbance. He looked up from his novel, seeing the baby's mother wear a look of distress as she tried to calm the unhappy child.
Drake and I were better babysitters, he thought, wondering why that had come into his mind. It had been years since Drake had babysat Mr. Galloway's son – hell, he saw him on his last trip home, and Max was now six – but that was a night that was hard to forget. They temporarily misplaced the baby thanks to one of Megan's pranks, and it'd been especially difficult to get the baby to fall asleep, and not only that, but Drake left to go to a gig and ended up coming back home because he felt sorry for Josh. He tried to suppress the smile that was starting to creep on his face as he was flooded with thoughts of the past.
Josh longed to have Drake at his side again, making even more crazy memories.
The moon glows…
Drake crawled into bed with a sigh, letting himself sink into the soft pillows. It was nights like this that he hated his apartment and still wished he lived at home; everything was way too silent. He longed for the noise of his family bustling about. His day had been horrible – the recording session hadn't gone as well as he hoped for, the drummer the studio hired couldn't play like his resume stated, and on top of that, Drake learned that he only had two more months to finish this album because Spin City wanted a quick release.
He wanted to put more time into it. He needed at least four months, then the release could be instantaneous. He wanted this to be the best damn thing he ever did, and only two more months of work wouldn't allow that to happen. He just wanted to talk this out with someone, anyone, but especially Josh. Drake looked at the clock and saw 2:43AM staring back at him. 5:43AM where Josh was. He knew Josh said he could call any time, no matter the hour, but he felt uncomfortable bothering him for his own selfish reasons.
Drake got out of bed and headed for his closet, using only the dull glow of the moon as his light. He pulled out one of Josh's shirts he still had and changed into it, smelling the fabric that Josh's scent still lingered on. As he got back into bed, he wished Josh was snuggling up to him.
The river flows, but I die without you.
There was little in New York City that reminded Josh of San Diego. The weather wasn't always beautiful, there weren't sections devoted to suburbs, and the people in New York seemed like they were permanently in a hurry to get to their destination. Whenever he needed a break from the busy streets, he found himself in Central Park sitting by the river. It slowly became a favorite place of his to go when the weather was nice; it was his little piece of San Diego for just a bit.
It always took Josh's mind back to the times he and Drake would go camping with the family. They weren't big campers, but when they went out, they always had a pretty good time. Drake would undoubtedly always forget to pack warm clothes, and since Drake and Josh shared a tent, he cuddled up to Josh for warmth. And they could blame any of their lovemaking noises on the fact that they were scared of the wilderness. "I swear, Mom," Drake told Audrey on one trip, "the only reason I screamed Josh was because I thought I saw a bear! It was crazy!" And Josh almost choked on his fish, knowing full well that wasn't the reason.
Josh vowed that when he got home, they'd go camping a little more often.
The world revives, colors renew.
The day Josh came home, he was met at the airport with a very excited Drake waiting to welcome him back to San Diego. The second Drake saw Josh step off the plane, he was off with a running start. He didn't care who saw him or that Josh was carrying two very heavy bags – all he cared about was that Josh was back. His Josh.
"JOSHIE!" Drake yelled, extending his arms and jumping up to wrap his legs around Josh's waist.
"DRAKE!" Josh grinned, dropping his bags to wrap his arms around Drake. He never, ever wanted to let go.
"I missed you," Drake managed to sputter out between the kisses Josh was being showered with. "I missed you so, so, so much, and I love you so, so, so much."
"I missed you, too. I love you, too." Josh's face felt like it was going to crack because he was smiling so wide. They seemed to have attracted the attention of a few people, but neither of them cared – this was the reunion they were waiting for. "I'm so glad to be home."
"I'm so glad you're here! And we can go to my apartment and do dirty things."
"Well, yeah, but I wanna visit Mom, Dad, and Megan first, Drake."
Drake tightened his legs around Josh and nipped lightly at his ear. "My bed. Dirty things. Now. Do you really wanna deal with Megan's pranks right now? It's been a long time, Joshie, and my apartment is nice and quiet and has a nice big bed for us…"
Josh planted a sweet kiss on Drake's lips as he untangled himself from the tight grasp. "I can't argue with that logic," he giggled, picking up one of his bags as Drake shockingly picked up the other. "Mom and Dad can wait."
Drake grinned triumphantly as he lazily intertwined his fingers with Josh's, heading through the airport feeling like they were walking on air. The best part of Josh being away was the perfect homecoming – there was nothing like a love-filled greeting after months away from each other. Drake leaned in and planted a kiss on Josh's cheek, seeing a smile come over his face. They had a lot of lost time to make up for.